Friday Happy Hour: Cherry Caipirinha

It’s starting to feel like summer here in DC, and summer means summer drinks.  Which may be why I’ve been on such a Latin American drinks kick, because so many Latin American drinks are perfect for summer: sweet, with lots of fruit and lots of ice, and a bit of kick, delicious and refreshing.  Here’s another to add to that list, a twist on Brazil’s national cocktail, the Cherry Caipirinha. – Andrew

Read below for the full recipe!

Cherry Caipirinha

2 oz Cachaça
1/4-1/2 oz Simple Syrup
1/2 Lime
3-4 Cherries
Soda Water

Quarter the lime half and pit the cherries, if needed.  Add the fruit and syrup to a rocks glass or tumbler, then muddle everything together very well.  Add the Cachaça and lots of crushed ice.  Top with soda water, give it a stir, then garnish with a bit of sugar cane (optional but pretty cool) and enjoy!


The Caipirinha is up there on my list of perfect summer drinks.  It’s sweet and tart, with lots of fresh flavor from the Cachaça, and enormously refreshing thanks to all that ice and soda water.  If you order a Caipirinha in the U.S., you’re most likely to get one made just with lime, which is a pretty great drink by itself.  But Brazilians use all kinds of fruit, from mango to kiwi to pineapple or passionfruit, in their Caipirinhas, so feel free to add or subtract fruit to this recipe.

The Caipirinha’s name reveals its humble origins as a rustic, easy-to-make version of drinks like the Daiquiri: it means something along the lines of “little country bumpkin” in Brazilian Portuguese.  But the Caipirinha has grown to be wildly popular all throughout Brazil and has been winding its way through the States in recent years.  Give one a try and you’ll see why.


The same drink might be pretty good, but a bit more ho-hum, without its key ingredient: the Brazilian spirit Cachaça (pronounced, roughly, ka-SHA-sa).  Cachaça is a close relative of rum, but Cachaça – unlike rum, which is usually distilled from fermented molasses – is distilled directly from fermented sugar cane juice.  The cane juice has to be processed soon after it is harvested, which means the Cachaça retains more flavors from the sugar cane, and much more of a sense of the place where it was made.  Cachaça is a funky spirit with lots of complex vegetal flavors, like a much earthier version of your favorite rum.  Fortunately, it’s increasingly easy to find – go pick some up!

Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper

{happy weekend!}

Whew!  What a week… but I hope you’re all enjoying the coverage from the 2012 National Stationery Show so far!  I’m looking forward to a relaxing weekend at home, and hopefully giving a little care and attention to our poor neglected apartment and garden.  But in the meantime…

Constellation Print by Sycamore Street Press

…a few links for your weekend:

This week on Oh So Beautiful Paper:

That’s it for me this week!  Cocktail Fridays will be back this afternoon – and we have a special cocktail just in time for Memorial Day weekend, so check back a bit later for the recipe!  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, and I’ll see you back here on Monday!  xoxo

National Stationery Show 2012, Part 5

Some stationers decide to combine efforts and share booth space at the National Stationery Show, either by working with a rep who oversees the whole booth or by simply dividing the booth square footage amongst the participating stationers.  This year there were three such booths, so I thought I’d end the week with these three booths since there’s a LOT of stationery eye candy in each one!  First up, three Seattle-based stationers sharing a booth – Ilee Paper Goods, Orange Twist, and Tutta Lou.



Ilee Paper Goods



Orange Twist



Tutta Lou

I always have a great time visiting the Ladies of Letterpress booth at the Stationery Show.  I love that the organization provides an opportunity for their members to test the wholesale waters – and it’s so fun to see members go on to exhibit in their own booths year after year.  This year there were eleven talented letterpress stationers exhibiting in the booth!


Sixpenny Press (left) and Bowerbox Press (right)

I loved the combination of hand-carved wood block illustrations and gold foil text on these holiday cards!

Bowerbox Press

Shauna and Stephen from Seed House did such an amazing job with their stationery debut – everything was so soft and delicate and full of vintage-inspired charm!



Seed House

Meg from Moglea also made a big splash at this year’s show with her collection of letterpress cards and stationery sets.  I also loved her illustrated quarterly wall calendar!





Fancy Seeing You Here is a new-to-me stationery company, but I was smitten with the collection of bright and colorful letterpress cards!


Fancy Seeing You Here



Shed Letterpress

Tella Press


Pepper Press


Petal Press (left) and Pink Orchid Press (right)

Pink Orchid Press

Carina from Crow and Canary is one of my favorite people in the stationery biz and she put together an awesome booth at this year’s show with some of my favorite stationers, from Paper + Cup to Enormous Champion and lots, lots more.


Enormous Champion


Lark Press (left) and a.favorite design (right)


Gilah Press (left) and Greenwich Letterpress (right)


Paper + Cup (left) and Candyspotting (right)


Ghost Academy (left) and Red Cap Cards (right)


Two Trick Pony


Pie Bird Press




Rock Scissor Paper

That’s it for now – coverage of the 2012 National Stationery Show will continue next week!

Photo Credits: Stephen Michael Garey and Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper, please ask permission prior to reposting any photos.

National Stationery Show 2012, Part 4

Sigh… the 2012 National Stationery Show is officially over.  And while I’m happy to be back home (and even happier to rest my aching feet!), I’m already going through pretty paper withdrawal and missing all my friends in the stationery industry.  I was excited to see a ton of new exhibitors at this year’s show, so today I thought I’d focus in on a few of the first-time exhibitor booths.  First up, the whimsical stationery from Rocket Ink; every design features hand lettering and/or a hand-drawn illustration or pattern.  Beautiful!




Rocket Ink

Pei Design might win the award for most adorable stationery collection from this year’s show.  I love the clean and modern aesthetic of the letterpress cards and fill-in invitations, not to mention the foil stamp pattern note cards and edge painted notebooks!



Pei Design

I loved all the modern black + white minimalism happening over at Pawling, from an incredibly cool topographic 2013 calendar (and corresponding cards) to geometric pattern newsprint gift wrap, art prints, tote bags, and notebooks.




The Regional Assembly of Text was one of several Canadian exhibitors at this year’s show.  This Vancouver-based duo presented a collection of super-cute note cards and corresponding buttons.  So fun!




Regional Assembly of Text

There were so many fun things happening over in the Jigsaw Graphics booth!  I’m constantly re-organizing and re-arranging things in my home, so I instantly fell in love with the dry erase labels and tags – so perfect for someone like me.  And the customizable letterpress stationery is pretty amazing; Jigsaw Graphics can take any signature and/or illustration, scan it in, and create personalized note cards for kids and adults.  Turns out that kids really love to write letters to their friends, so hooray for the future generation of letter-writers!



Jigsaw Graphics

I loved the home library vibe of the Papillon Press booth (another Canadian exhibitor!).  Their collection of letterpress greeting cards was both pretty and incredibly funny – such a great combination!  I particularly enjoyed the Victorian card series with phrases and tips from an antique etiquette guide.





Papillon Press

I’m so happy I came across The Permanent Collection booth – so many fantastic letterpress cards and prints!  And I can’t get over the large scale letterpress prints of wedding vows and birth announcement details… such a great way to commemorate a momentous occasion (and surprisingly affordable, too!).


The Permanent Collection

I’m still working my way through all the photos from the show, but I’ll be back with more soon!

Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Calligraphy Inspiration: Nancy Hopkins Handlettering

Ed Note: Hi Everyone! I’m taking a quick break from National Stationery Show coverage today to get more photos and posts ready to share with you.  I’ll be back with more from the show tomorrow! – Nole

The thing I love most about calligraphy is its emotive qualities.  Sometimes, it seems we have enough trouble trying to put thoughts and feelings into words.  But to then have those words illustrate these things, simply through line and form, is pretty amazing; it’s quite the challenge.  Nancy of Nancy Hopkins Handlettering seems to enjoy the challenge by the looks of her portfolio.  With 15 years of experience specializing in commercial and event calligraphy, and clients like Saks Fifth Avenue, Bank of America, and Martha Stewart Magazine, she has certainly made a name for herself transforming the written word. – Julie

 Nancy Hopkins invitation suite

Nancy Hopkins blue addressed envelopes

A mix of calligraphy and hand lettering along with a great use of space adds charm to addressed envelopes.

Nancy Hopkins warm invitation suite

Nancy Hopkins detail

The perfectly imperfect line quality of some of her styles are swoon-worthy.  The words are given such personality and texture, don’t you think?

Nancy Hopkins addressed and illustrated envelopes

Nancy Hopkins kraft envelopes

Nancy Hopkins grey lettered envelope and place cards

Don’t forget to visit Nancy’s website for more of her work.  She recently updated the website – and with many fantastic examples and with 26 lettering styles available, it’s almost guaranteed that she has a style perfectly suited for your needs.

Letterpress printing: Olivia San Mateo

Photo Credits: Sabine Elser